“Love is always bestowed as a gift—
freely, willingly, and without expectation.
We don’t love to be loved, we love to love.”
No matter what your spiritual orientation (including atheism or agnosticism), Paul Twitchell, in his poetic book, Stranger by the River, in a chapter simply called “Love,” captures the essence of unconditional love:
“The requirements of growth demand that you exert the greatest degree of love for what is perfectly in accord with Soul. Our highest happiness will be best attained through our understanding of, and conscious cooperation with, the divine law.
“It is love that imparts vitality to our minds and hearts and enables it to germinate. The law of love will bring to you all necessity for your spiritual growth and maturity.
“Therefore, if you desire love, try to realize that the only way to get love is by giving love. That the more you give, the more you get; and the only way in which you can give is to fill yourself with it, until you become a magnet of love.”
Look at your life right now:
— Do you have enough joy in your life?
— Do you have enough unconditional love?
— Are you ready to make the changes necessary to get more joy and love into your life?
— Are you ready to do the challenging work of transforming yourself into a different kind of person? One who thinks differently every day?
Well, now you know the secret. Now you know what you need to be doing every day of your life, from this point on, no matter what.
And no matter how hard it is initially.
And as you give without any thought of receiving, as you allow such giving to take over more and more of your life, you will begin to see the greatest secret of all.
The great secret hidden within
all the most holiest and sacred of places
The secret that no one can explain
or give to another.
The secret that has always been
hiding itself in plain sight
within your secret heart.
You Gain All by Giving All.
The Snap Out of It! Checklist
___ It doesn’t matter what happens to you; what matters is how you respond.
___ Get angry, toxic people out of your life.
___ Find great teachers who teach you how to think, not what to think.
___ Don’t bully anyone, for any reason, especially about politics.
___ TANSTAAFL: There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
___ Debt is slavery. Don’t leave debt on credit cards. Avoid student loans.
___ Your imagination is the tool with which you architect your life.
___ Beware of people who plant negative images about yourself and others.
___ You don’t get what you want in life; you get what you picture.
___ Don’t focus on what to avoid; focus on where you want to go.
___ Take charge of your Self-Talk. Change every negative thought into its positive opposite
___ Every day, imagine vividly, with feeling, your best life.
___ Do your daily imagination exercises.
___ Adults keep emotions in balance with thoughtfulness.
___ Other people’s opinions of you are no longer any of your business.
___ You are curious, flexible, persistent, and independent, with a tremendous spirit of adventure and a love of play.
___ Every day you become less of a child and more of an adult.
___ You act more and more like an individual, and less like part of a group.
___ You are resilient. When life knocks you down, you land on your back, because you know that if you can look up, you can get up.
___ Experts have blind spots. Discover life for yourself.
___ Before you try to change others, you first change yourself; and along the way you discover that others will change without your help.
___ Resist the youthful impulse to tear everything down.
___ You understand that to be happy, you must act happy, grow, bounce back from hardships, and lead a good and charitable life worthy of happiness.
___ The secret of happiness is freedom, and the secret to freedom is courage.
___ Your measure of success is how much more you laugh every day.
___ Among the lucky, you are the chosen one.
___ You gain all by giving all.
Recommended Videos and Stuff
“Thought control, like birth control, is best undertaken as long as possible before the fact. Many grown-ups will obstinately persist, if only now and then, in composing small strings of sentences in their heads and achieving at least a momentary logic. This probably cannot be prevented, but we have learned how to minimize its consequences by arranging that such grown-ups will be unable to pursue that logic very far.” –Richard Mitchell, Less Than Words Can Say
The Universe of Jordan Peterson
Your first Jordan Peterson interview.
The Professor Against Political Correctness series
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Creating Your Life Videos
Subscribe to Creating Your Life.
Most popular video: The Reticular Activating System, Part 2
Must-See YouTube Videos
Eat The Rich!
The rich should pay for everything! They have all the money! Let’s take it from them! What can go wrong?
Bill Whittle’s What We Believe series. Why do so many people distrust government force, and prefer the freedoms associated with individual actions?
Why Be Happy?
A classic short video that clarifies exactly what Happiness is.
Must Read Books
Much of my thinking is strongly influenced by Richard Mitchell, one of the great unheard of teachers and thinkers about education in the 20th century.
I have created a website to archive his works: The Underground Grammarian.
Many of my thoughts in this book come from these classic works:
Less Than Words Can Say (on language, its use and misuse)
Another great writer and thinker is Thomas Sowell. If you want to be credible at all when discussing race, economics, disparities, and discrimination, you have to know Thomas Sowell’s facts and research.
He puts you in a powerful position to tell Reason from Rubbish.
Here are two fact-based starter books:
Notice that everyone who wants to criticize Sowell never deals directly with his facts and arguments. They always want to label him and attack his character, a strong sign that someone wants to feed you rubbish. Sowell is not a conservative or libertarian. He is all about facts.
Here are more books that I recommend in my A Lifetime of Learning series of books:
Barry, Dave. (1995.) Dave Barry’s Complete Guide to Guys. New York: Random House. (A humorous take on, not men, but guys.)
Browne, Harry. (1999.) Fail-Safe Investing: Lifelong Financial Security in 30 Minutes. New York: St. Martin’s Press.
Buscaglia, Leo. (1996.) Love: What Life is All About. New York: Ballantine Books.
(One of the great feel-good speakers and writers, and a role model of living love. You may want to first check out this fun and moving YouTube video of his university talk on “The Art of Being Fully Human”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmIDDtSIfWw)
Chapman, Gary. (2010.) The Five Love Languages: The Secret of Love that Lasts. Chicago: Northfield Publishing. (A simple, modern view of love. Light reading.)
De Angelis, Barbara. (1990.) Secrets About Men Every Woman Should Know. New York: Dell Publishing. (Although some of her advice does not apply generally to all men and women, she often provides worthwhile suggestions.)
Friedman, Milton, and Friedman, Rose. (1979, 1990.) Free to Choose: A Personal Statement. Boston: Mariner Books.
Gladwell, Malcolm. (2008). Outliers: The Story of Success. Little Brown and Company: New York, NY
Hazlitt, Henry. (1946, 1988.) Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest and Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics. New York: Three Rivers Press.
Hewitt, Hugh. (2014.) The Happiest Life: Seven Gifts, Seven Givers, and the Secret of Genuine Success. Nashville: Nelson Books.
Maybury, Richard J. (2010.) Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?. Placerville, CA: Bluestocking Press.
Murray, Charles. (2014.) The Curmudgeon’s Guide to Getting Ahead: Dos and Don’ts of Right Behavior, Tough Thinking, Clear Writing, and Living a Good Life. New York: Crown Publishing Group.
Paronto, Chris. (2017). The Ranger Way. Hachette Books: New York, NY.
Prager, Dennis. (2008.) Happiness is a Serious Problem. New York: HarperCollins.
Sowell, Thomas. (2008.) Economic Facts and Fallacies. New York: Basic Books.
Tice, Lou. (1995). Smart talk for achieving your potential: 5 steps to get you from here to there. Seattle: Pacific Institute Publishing.
Twitchell, Paul. (1970, 1989.) Stranger by the River. Third ed. Minneapolis: ECKANKAR.
Wilson, Timothy. (2004). Strangers to Ourselves: Discovering the Adaptive Unconscious. Harvard University Press: Cambridge.
Mark Andre Alexander is a curmudgeon with a heart. He has college degrees, has worked in Silicon Valley, composes music, performs on piano and keyboard, and likes to make people laugh.
Lucky for him, he is married to a woman who improves him just by being present.
Check out his books on Amazon.com.
Books in the series A Lifetime of Learning
Creating Your Life: A Lifetime of Learning Book 1
Money and Wealth: A Lifetime of Learning Book 2
Sex and Romance: A Lifetime of Learning Book 3
Mozart and Great Music: A Lifetime of Learning Book 4
Handbook for Advanced Souls: Eternal Reminders for the Present Moment
Snap Out of It!: The Millennial Guide to Taking Back Your Sucky Life
Go to MarkAndreAlexander.Com.
Subscribe to the Creating Your Life YouTube channel.